This week's Monday Night Debate Question dealt with the idea of whether or not it should be a paranormal investigator/ghost hunter's duty to help an alleged entity 'cross over,' or otherwise remove that entity from a property. Here are my thoughts on that touchy subject:
Many investigation groups, as part of their services, DO offer to 'remove' an entity or cleanse/bless the property. As this is an unregulated field with no real set rules, if that works for them, that's fine with me. We don't all have to do things the same way and we don't always have to agree. However, I personally do not think these services should be offered and my group does not promise them. The basic reason is that we cannot guarantee that a removal or cleansing will have any effect, and in some cases, it actually seems to make things WORSE. Let's take a closer look...
I have a few reasons I feel that way I do about this subject and the first is simply this---at this point in time, we cannot prove that ghosts, or what we perceive as ghosts, exist. We can't confidently measure or classify these suspected entities and we sure as hell cannot even begin to understand how they operate the way they do. Until we can answer these questions and know exactly what it is we're dealing with, we can't ethically say we can make it go away, never to come back.
Secondly, let's say that it is possible to remove an entity or to cleanse/bless a location. I'm actually all for doing ritualistic cleansing and banishing rituals as part of investigation after care, but such events are so deeply personal and rooted in faith that I feel the investigator should only help the client choose which method they most agree with, and facilitate the ritual. In no circumstance should the investigator be the one to take the lead. Why? These types of rituals are mentally powerful. In order for a ritual to 'work,' the client must BELIEVE it will work. They need to choose a method that works harmoniously with their own beliefs and own it. Taking an active role in the process is very empowering and shows the entity that the client (and not some stranger that comes onto the property, only to leave again) is the one in charge.
Thirdly, even cleansings and removals that are deemed by those who practice such as being successful, don't always last. There is plenty of anecdotal evidence suggesting that many times, clients will begin to miss their ghost or spirit. Excessive thinking and talking about that entity might be enough to invite them, or activity back in. There also tends to be certain behaviors that people are guilty of that seemingly attract paranormal activity. Just because one entity is 'removed' doesn't mean that the continuation of such behavior (things like drug abuse, domestic violence, etc.) won't bring in something else. And, if you're dealing with just a simple cleansing, cleansings are really only meant to clear out negative energy....not remove entities. Just like the dirt and dust in your home, it'll build up and you'll have to maintain it on a regular basis.
And lastly, let's look at things from another perspective. Should we make an entity leave a location and cross over? Again, I think that's fine if there's someone with mediumistic abilities that might facilitate a crossing over if that's what the entity wants...but who are we to demand they do so? Despite what some people think, we DON'T have all the answers. Maybe that entity is still here because it has a mission or unfinished business. Our interference could delay or stunt that entities spiritual growth and development. Or, what if what is on the other side actually is worse than what is here?
Instead of worrying about these types of issues, my preferred methodology when it comes to investigation aftercare is educating the client and helping them with the tools they need to feel comfortable in their own homes or places of business. In an overwhelming majority of cases, its is entirely possible to coexist peacefully with those on the other side, and aside from documenting potential evidence of those beings, that is my goal as an investigator.